Richard Butler | Daily Post | Sept 16 2017
FEATURE Airports Vanuatu Ltd has just announced plans to upgrade the existing Bauerfield airport terminal, with the intention of having it ready in time for the influx of athletes and officials attending the Pacific Mini Games in September.
This work doesn’t conflict with plans for an entirely new terminal, AVL representatives say. They maintain that a bigger, more intuitive space for domestic operations will still benefit everyone.The upgrade includes a small expansion of the terminal building itself, filling the gap between the existing terminal and the VIP terminal.
This will create space for a set of toilets, as well as two new shops on the publicly accessible side of the departure area.
Inside, a simpler, higher capacity configuration allows more passengers to pass through security and border control at the same time and reduces choke points on the way. Once inside, departing passengers will see a refurbished lounge area, featuring shops, duty free stores, a café and other amenities.
For the first time, business class and paying customers will be able to access a quiet, upscale executive lounge.An upper floor smoking and outdoor relaxation area—not pictured in this drawing—will replace the current, rather stodgy smoking section. Departing passengers will now be able to watch planes come and go as they await their own departure.
This lounge area is accessed by a flight of stairs in the front corner of the lounge.The existing staircase located beside the airline ticket counters will see a new upper floor office for police and security personnel to keep an eye on all comings and goings.New floor surfaces and ceiling materials will add a degree of brightness and modernity to all areas within the terminal.
It is expected that the apron area will comfortably hold one 737-style jet aircraft, along with one 787-style wide-body plane. The arrivals area will be larger, simpler and easier to navigate, with space for more arriving passengers in the queuing area.
New toilets will be added to the arrivals lounge for the comfort of those just off the plane. A simplified, expanded space for immigration and security checks will allow for nearly twice the number of passengers to be processed at the same time.
Passengers will then file into the baggageclaim area, which will be familiar to repeat passengers. Access to customs inspections will be similar to the existing setup.More room, simpler lines for queuing and processing, cleaner, brighter facilities and a friendlier space are among the goals of the renovation, whose plan was put together with the assistance of CPM Vanuatu.
They recently assisted the Ramada with additional planning when that construction project stalled briefly. The tender process will be accelerated, due to the limited scope and timeline. The tender itself is being advertised in today’s newspaper.
These conditions should favour local contractors, because of their ability to deploy quickly and to remain flexible in the face of deadlines.It is possible that more than one contractor will be selected, given the circumstances.If all goes well, AVL representatives told the Daily Post, we’ll have a flash new terminal to welcome the thousands of incoming athletes, officials and visitors when December rolls around.